China confirms Australian trade minister's visit from May 11 to 13
Australian Trade Minister Don Farrell is visiting China from May 11 to 13, the Chinese Ministry of Commerce announced on Thursday.
Speaking at a press conference, Shu Jueting, spokesperson for the ministry, said the Chinese side hopes that the visit will further implement the consensus reached between the two countries' heads of state in Bali in November.
Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao extended the invitation of the visit to Farrell during their virtual talks in February, when Wang said that trade and economic relations between China and Australia were facing an "important window of opportunity."
The two sides should make joint efforts to inject more positive factors into their economic and trade cooperation, he said.
China is the largest trading partner of Australia, and Australia is the eighth largest trading partner of China. Bilateral trade totaled $58.79 billion in the first quarter of 2023, up 10.9 percent year-on-year, according to data from China's General Administration of Customs.
In response to a media query over the Australian trade minister's visit at a regular news briefing on Thursday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said that China and Australia are both important countries in the Asia-Pacific region.
The economic structures between the two sides are highly complementary, and bilateral economic and trade cooperation is mutually beneficial and for win-win outcome, said Wang.
"It is in the fundamental interests of the two countries and the two peoples to improve, maintain and grow China-Australia relations," he said.